Glossary Grades K-12
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ABCD
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Blue River Valley Schools Indiana Academic Standards English/language Arts Glossary
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A
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AccuracyReading words in text with no errors
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AdjectiveWords that describe a noun (e.G., Red, bold, dangerous)
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AdverbWords that modify a verb, adjective, or another adverb. An adverb tells how, when, where, why, how often, or how much (e.G.,Frequently, very, quickly)
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Aesthetic ImpactResponse of the reader to the beauty of the text
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AffixGeneral term that refers to prefixes and suffixes
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AllegoryA story in which people, things, and actions represent ideas and have a moral or lesson about life (e.G., Animal farm by george orwell)
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AlliterationRepetition of the initial consonant sound in two or more neighboring words (e.G., Harry the happy hippo hula-hoops with henrietta)
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AllusionAn implied or indirect reference to a person, place, or event -- real (e.G., Historical, cultural) or fictional (e.G., Mythological, literary, classical)
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AnalogyA comparison of the features or qualities of two different things to show their similarities (e.G., He was as quiet as a mouse.)
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ArchetypeA symbol, plot pattern, or character type that occurs frequently in literature, myths, religious works, or folklore (e.G., The character type of the hero)
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ArgumentAn expression of a point of view about a subject supported with evidence
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AudienceThe specified or clearly implied person(s) to whom writers address his/her correspondence
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B
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BiasAn inclination or tendency towards an idea
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BlendingThe task of combining sounds rapidly, to accurately represent the word
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C
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Central IdeaThe most important or central thought of a text
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Chapter
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CharacterPerson who takes part in the action of a story, novel, or a play. Sometimes characters can be animals or imaginary creatures, such as beings from another planet.
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Characterization/ Character DevelopmentHow characters are described and developed either directly or indirectly (e.G., The narrator's direct comments about a character,
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CitationA reference to a source. Citation may be done formally through such formats as mla or apa
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Cite Textual EvidenceTo quote directly or indirectly from a text in order to provide evidence
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Claim
An arguable statement. Claims typically fall into one of four categories: claims of fact or definition, claims of cause and effect, claims about value, claims about solutions or policies
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ClimaxThe point in a literary text at which the conflict reaches its greatest intensity. For example, in "goldilocks and the three bears" the return home of the bears is the climax
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CohesionThe flow of sentences, paragraphs, or sections of text to show connection among ideas
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Collegial (discussions)Working together and showing equal consideration among members of a group
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Compare And ContrastCompare: to point out similarities
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Contrast: to point out differences
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Complex SentenceA sentence with an independent clause joined by an dependent/subordinate clause (e.G., Since the weather is nice, I'll go for a walk)
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Compound Sentence
A sentence that contains two independent clauses joined by a coordinating conjunction (e.G., It is raining outside, and I forgot my umbrella)
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Compound-complex SentenceA sentence containing two independent clauses and a dependent clause (e.G., Sue needed to print her paper because it was due, but the printer was out of ink.)
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ComprehensionUnderstanding what one is reading, the ultimate goal of all reading activity
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ConciseExpressing ideas in few words, avoiding wordiness and redundancy
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Conditional MoodA verb mood that indicates a conditional state that will cause something else to happen. It is marked by words such as might, could, and would (e.G., I might go to the pool tomorrow if it does not rain.)
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ConflictA struggle between opposing forces in a story or play, usually resolved by the end of the work
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Connotation/ Connotative Meaning
Meaning associated with a word in addition to the literal meaning. For example, childlike has a more positive connotation than childish
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Consonant BlendTwo or more consecutive consonants which retain their individual sounds (e.G., /Bl/ in block; /str/ in string)
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Consonant DigraphTwo consecutive consonants that represent one phoneme, or sound (e.G., /Ch/, /sh/)
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Content-specific WordsVocabulary specific to a content area or topic (e.G., Matrices in math, genome in biology, axis in geography)
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ContextThe parts of a written or spoken statement that precede or follow a specific word or phrase, usually influencing or explaining its meaning.
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Context CluesUsing words or sentences around an unfamiliar word to help clarify its meaning by using words or sentences around an unfamiliar word to help clarify its meaning
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CounterclaimsArguable statements intended to counter or dispute other claims
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Credibility (of Sources)Evaluating sources for reliability of information
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D
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Decodable TextText in which a high proportion of words (80%-90%) comprise sound-symbol relationships that have already been taught; it is used for the purpose of providing practice with specific decoding skills and is a bridge between learning phonics and the application of for the purpose of providing practice with specific decoding skills and is a bridge between learning phonics and the application of
phonics in independent reading
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DecodeThe ability to translate a word from print to speech, usually by employing knowledge of sound symbol correspondences; also the denotation act of deciphering a new word by sounding it out
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DenotationAct of deciphering a new word by sounding it out
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DefinitionThe literal meaning of a word or phrase
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DialogueConversation between two or more people that advances the action, is consistent with the character of the speakers, and serves to give relief from passages essentially descriptive or expository media transmitted digitally (e.G., Video, websites)
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Digital MediaMedia transmitted digitally (e.G., Video, websites)
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DipthongTwo successive letters that make a single sound. For example, the ea in bread, or the ng in sing
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Dynamic CharacterA complex character who develops or changes over the course of the text (e.G., Bilbo baggins in the hobbit)
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E
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EvidenceSupport for an idea or claim
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ExplicitlyClearly expressed, nothing implied (e.G., In referencing a text, you cite a statistic or direct quote)
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ExpositionWriting or speech intended to convey information or explain
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F
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FableA short, simple story that teaches a lesson; a fable usually includes animals that talk and act like people
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FairytaleA story written for, or told to, children that includes elements of magic and magical folk such as fairies, elves, or goblins
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Fact And OpinionStatements of fact can be proven conclusively to be true or false; statements of opinion cannot be proven to be true or false
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Fallacious ReasoningDefects that weaken an argument (e.G., Hasty generalization, appeal to authority, slippery slope)
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FictionImaginative works of prose, primarily the novel and the short story - although fiction draws on actual events and real people, it springs mainly from the imagination of the writer. The purpose is to entertain as well as enlighten the reader by providing a deeper Understanding of the human condition.
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Figurative LangaugeLanguage that communicates ideas beyond the ordinary or literal meaning of the words
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Figurative MeaningNon-literal meanings of language that include figures of speech such as similes, metaphors, and implied comparisons.
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Figures Of SpeechNon-literal language used for effect such as simile, hyperbole, personification (e.G., I've seen that movie a million times.)
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FlashbackA narrative device in which an event or scene that took place in the past is inserted into the chronological structure of the work
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FluencyAutomatic word recognition, rapid decoding, and checking for meaning
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FolktaleA short narrative handed down through oral tradition, with various tellers and groups modifying it, so that it acquired cumulative authorship; most folktales eventually move from oral tradition to written form.
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Foundational American And World DocumentsImportant texts through which ideas and culture are founded (e.G., The declaration of independence)
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General Academic Words Language that frequently appears across written texts and goes beyond everyday speech; these words often have multiple or more precise meanings (e.G., Saunter, fluctuate, preliminary)
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GenreCategories of text including broad ones like fiction and nonfiction, or divided more specifically like historical fiction, memoir, and personal essays
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Greek/latin AffixesMorphemes added to words change the meaning or function (e.G., Di-, -ly)
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Greek/latin RootsWords or word elements to which affixes may be added to make other words (e.G., Cycle, join)
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High-frequency Words Words that are recognized immediately - sometimes sight words are thought to be irregular, or high frequency words (e.G., The Dolch and fry lists); however, any word that is recognized automatically is a sight word. These words may be phonetically regular or irregular.
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HomographOne of two or more words spelled alike but different in meaning and derivation or pronunciation (e.G., The noun conduct and the Verb conduct are homographs)
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HomonymOne of two or more words spelled and pronounced alike but different in meaning (e.G., The noun quail and the verb quail)
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HomophoneOne of two or more words pronounced alike but different in meaning or derivation or spelling (e.G., The words to, too, and two)
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HyperboleAn intentional exaggeration for emphasis or comic effect
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IdiomA phrase or expression that means something different from what the words actually say; an idiom is usually understandable to a Particular group of people. (E.G., Using ‘over his head’ for ‘doesn’t Understand.’)
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ImageryDescriptive language that portrays sensory experiences, creating a picture in the mind of the reader. For example in the poem "daffodils" by william wordsworth, he uses this descriptive language: "beside the lake, beneath the trees,/ fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
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Independent Reading LevelThe level at which a reader can read text with 95% accuracy (i.E., No more than one error per 20 words read); independent reading Level is relatively easy text for the reader
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InferencesConclusions or judgments based on evidence
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Informational TextNonfiction writing in narrative or non-narrative form that is intended to inform
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Inquiry QuestionA focused question with multiple answers that is open to research
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IronyA difference between appearance and reality. The three main types are verbal, situational, and dramatic irony. "The gift of the Magi" by o. Henry is a famous example of situational irony
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JuxtaposedPlaced close together or side by side, especially for comparison or contrast
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L
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LiteratureThis genre includes stories, novels, poetry, and plays
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M
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Main IdeaIn informational or expository writing, the most important thought or overall position; the main idea or thesis of a piece, written in Sentence form, is supported by details and explanation
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Media Literacy
The ability to understand, analyze, and evaluate media (electronic or digital means and print or artistic visuals used to transmit messages)
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MetaphorA figure of speech in which a term or phrase is used to imply comparison between two seemingly unlike things (e.G., My friend is Always an early bird.)
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